Saturday, December 31, 2011

Review of 2011

Just as 2010, I ran every day in 2011. That is what streakers do. I had no major injuries until late in the summer when I started pulling and tearing hamstrings. Recovery continues. Because of the injuries, I had to cut back on my fall marathon schedule. I still completed a total of 67 races during the year, compared to 59 last year.
The 67 consisted on 1-50 miler, 1-50K, 13 marathons, 1-25K, 2 half marathons, 3-10K’s, 37-5K’s and 9 other races with distances ranging from 2.7 to 5 miles.
This afternoon, I went out to the park with visiting family and hiked 2.5 miles. After getting back home, I ran a little over a mile on the roads in my neighborhood. Marathon tomorrow.
Happy New Year.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Warm and Sunny

It was warm and sunny today, so I went out to the park this afternoon and ran a 2.5-mile loop on the trails.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Long Day

I got up early this morning and drove 135 miles up to Tyler in a heavy fog. We had a family get-together and then I drove back tonight. I went to the track and ran laps after 10 tonight.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Another New Course

After working out at Nautilus this afternoon, I drove to the track and ran a new course on the roads from there. Even ran some streets in the avenues that I had never run before. The course had some tough hills and turned out to be 2.0 miles. Tonight, we went to the Sam Houston-Samford basketball game. Visited a little with my friend, Willie Fritz, head coach of the Sam Houston football team. They will be playing North Dakota State on January 7 for the national FCS championship. Willie is a good runner, but probably better football coach.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Signed up for the Orphan Hope Marathon

I just signed up for the Orphan Hope Marathon at Huntsville State Park on February 11. This is a new trail marathon and I designed and measured the course. It takes in the best trails at the park. It is just one week after the Rocky Raccoon 50-Miler, but I should be recovered. My hamstring still hurts when I run. Guess it is going to take a while for it to heal. I will be running the Texas Marathon in Kingwood this Sunday and then the Houston Marathon two weeks later. My concern about Houston is meeting the 6-hour time limit. I'll see how it goes in Kingwood.
This afternoon, I worked out at Nautilus and then ran a new course on the roads around town. It turned out to be 2.8 miles.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Late Start

I did not get much sleep last night, so I took a nap this afternoon. It was late when I awoke and I went to Nautilus. By the time I finished working out, it was dark, so I ran on the treadmill. I do not see how anybody can do a long run on a treadmill. Terribly boring.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Day

I drove over to the track and ran a 1.3-mile loop in the cold and light rain this afternoon. Still no complaining about the rain.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Run the Woodlands 5K

I ran my last race of the year this morning. Got up early and drove down south for the Run the Woodlands 5K. For being the day before Christmas, they had a good crowd (70+). It rained up until the start of the race and I finished in 39:47.
Merry Christmas to everyone who reads this blog entry.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Quarter Marathon

Leah asked me to run one loop of the two-loop hilly Huntsville Half course with her this morning. While doing training runs in the morning is generally against my nature, I consented. It was in the 40's and very comfortable for running. We ran one 6.55-mile loop.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Small Crowd

Only two of us showed up at the park this evening, me and speedy Jacob. I ran 2 miles on the park roads, while he ran 3.5 on the trails. We finished at the same time.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Squeezed in a Run

I have a lot of family visiting today, but squeezed in a run at the track this afternoon.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Trails Again

I ran 3 miles on the trails at the park this evening with the group. Despite the heavy rain last night, the trails are in good shape.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Solo Trail Run

I went out to the state park this afternoon and did a solo 3-mile run on the trails. I noticed that the wild pigs have been digging up the ground along the trails, especially down by the lake. I have run into them a number of times while running the trails, but not for several years. They seem to move in and out of the area. Certainly looks like they are in now.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Empty Campus

I went to the track this afternoon and ran a 2-mile loop through the campus. With classes over for the holidays, the only traffic was the university police. Luckily, I did not get a speeding ticket.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Willis Wildkat 5K and Wedding

For the 6th consecutive year, I went down to Willis (20 minutes or so south of Huntsville) for the Willis Wildkat 5K this morning. I made some improvement over my last 5K, but I'm still off my normal. I finished in 39:30. I guess hamstrings take a long time to heal. In any case, I was the only one in my age group and got a first place medal. My wife walked the race and won her age group also. This afternoon, I drove 50 miles over to Livingston to attend Mary Sweeten's wedding. Mary and I have run a lot together over the years. Beautiful wedding and she married a nice guy. I wish them a wonderful life together.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Track and a Football Game

I went to the track and ran laps this afternoon and then went to the Sam Houston State and Montana football game here in Huntsville tonight. Sam won 31-28 and will play either North Dakota State or Georgia Southern for the national championship (Division I) on January 7 in Frisco, Texas.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Jingle Bell Waterway Run

Tonight was the Jingle Bell Waterway Run in The Woodlands. My friend, Beth Whitehead, puts on this 3.5-mile non-competitive run every year and does such a great job. The course is out and back along with decorated waterway in The Woodlands. I finished in about 45 minutes, about 10 minutes slower than last year. We all met at Berryhill for dinner after the run.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Late Start

By the time I finished working out at Nautilus this evening, it was getting dark. I drove to the track and ran the roads from there. The course turned out to be 1.6 miles. With people texting and talking on the cell phone, I really hesitate running the roads after dark. Back when people only drove drunk, I felt more confortable running at night.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Another Morning Run

I had to take my brother-in-law down to Hobby Airport south of Houston this afternoon. That is a time consuming project, especially with the drive back in Houston rush hour traffic. So, I went over to the track this morning and ran roads from there. Turned out to be a 2.1-mile loop.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Easy Day

I went over to the Field House today and bought tickets for Friday's playoff game in Huntsville between Sam Houston State and Montana and then had lunch with my son, Ben, at the Potato Shack. I mowed the grass for the last time this season, worked out at Nautilus and then laps at the track.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

BCS Marathon

Got up early for the drive over to College Station for the inaugural BCS (Bryan/College Station) Marathon. The race started at 7 a.m. with a temperature in the 30's. It got up into the 50's during the race. For me, it was ideal. The hamstring hurt, but it was tolerable for the first 15 miles. My half-way time was 3:04, compared to 3:22 at Fort Worth a few weeks ago. So, I am getting some healing. After 15 miles, it really hurt and affected my running. The race time limit was 6:30 and I was on track to finish within that limit. Then, at about 18 miles, just before getting to the Texas A&M campus, the cones on the course had been removed. I made a wrong turn and ran nearly a mile before I ran into a guy on a bike who had been working the race. He told me that I had run the same distance as the course and told me where to meet up with the course. I went back and started running through the campus and talked to some road guards, who told me that I was at the 20-mile maker. So I got back on the course. I soon realized that I was ahead of some runners who had been ahead of me. I kept running until I got within a few feet of the finish line chute. Then, I turned around and started running the course backwards. Eventually, I ran into the guy who had been ahead of me before I left the course. I let him pass me and then I turned around and headed back to the finish line, behind him. My finish time was 6:24:55 and I think I ran the 26.2-mile distance.
I was really upset about the early removal of the course markings, but there was a lot of positives about the race. Nice course and the aid stations were loaded with super friendly volunteers and virtually every aid station had a large medical staff.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Rare Morning Run

I got up and went to the track and ran laps this morning. A little later I had breakfast at the Cafe Texan on the square in Huntsville. It is suppose to be the oldest continually operated restaurant in Texas. From there, I went to the Sam Houston State/Montana State football game here in Huntsville. Sam is rated number 1 in the nation among small college and this was a quarter final game in the tournament to determine the national champion. Sam won 49-13 and plays Montana (the other Montana team) next weekend in a semi-final matchup. Later, I drove 50 miles over to College Station to pick up my packet for the marathon tomorrow and run some other errands. My son, Ben, went with me and we had pasta before driving back to Huntsville. I will have to push myself tomorrow to make the 6:30 cut-off for finishing. I know the problem I had in Fort Worth a few weeks ago.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Back from Tyler

I ran laps at the track yesterday and then drove up to Tyler for a family affair. After getting back to Huntsville tonight, I went to the track at 9 p.m. and ran laps again. Another short run tomorrow and then the marathon in College Station on Sunday.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Another Short Run

With the BCS Marathon in College Station on Sunday, I am resting my hamstring this week. Short runs, rolling the hamstring and taking lots of Ibuprohen. I ran a mile and a half on the track this afternoon.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Broken Marathon Series Streak

For the last two years, I have run the Marathons of Texas (White Rock in Dallas, Houston Marathon and the Austin Marathon). By not running the White Rock Marathon on Sunday, I broke that streak. At one time, I thought about Running the Texas Trail 50K on Saturday and then driving up to Dallas for the White Rock on Sunday. However, with my injuries this fall, doing two long runs in one weekend was out. The Texas Trail 50K is one of my streak races (16 straight years), so that was more important.
I still have a 4-year streak for the Texas Marathon Triple (Texas Marathin in Kingwood in January, Surfside Beach Marathon in February and the Seabrook Marathon in March). I have already signed up for all three. I should also be able to continue my 4-year streak for the Texas Marathon Challenge (any 5 Texas marathons in a season).
This evening, I ran 2 miles on the park roads while the rest of the group ran trails. I had to get back early to attend my wife's Master Gardener Annual Christmas Dinner. There was no one there to talk about running with, but the food was good.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Indoor Run

It was cold and rainy today and my hamstring was hurting from the 50K on Saturday and the 5K on Sunday. So, I went to Nautilus this evening, ran a mile+ on the treadmill (first time in a long time) and then worked out.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunday Night 5K

Even though it rained most of today (no complaints), I drove down to The Woodlands this evening for The Woodlands Running Club's Sunday Night 5K. Luckily, it did not rain during the race. I finished in 40:09, which must be a PW (personal worst) for a 5K.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

5 Seconds

I went out to Huntsville State Park this morning to run the Texas Trail 50K, for the 16th consecutive year. It consisted of a 6.7-mile loop, followed by two 12.15-mile loops, to get in 31 miles. Cloudy day and rather warm and humid. Temperature got up into the 70's. With this hamstring problem, I know that I am running slow and cautiously. The race had a 10-hour time limit, but to continue the race, you had to start your third loop in 5 hours and 30 minutes. I ran most of my second loop with an old friend, Ed Thompson. We did not realize it until we approached the start/finish area that we were close to the 5:30 cut off. We had to boogie. We made it with only 5 seconds to spare. For the third loop, I got out ahead of Ed and passed 3 other runners. I finished in 9:50:30 and Ed came in just under the 10-hour cutoff. I never fell and messed up the hamstrings. Last year, my time was 8:50:40. My PR in this race is 6:33.25 (1999).

Friday, December 2, 2011

Rainy Forecast Revised

The forecast for tomorrow has been revised. 10 percent all day and then it starts going up at 5 p.m. Sounds like a good chance of no rain during the Texas Trail 50K. I went out to the park this evening to pick up my packet. Found out that I had registered online twice. Never done that before and, as a race director, always chuckled when people did that. Laugh was on me this time. Roger Soler was very accommodating and gave me a cash refund. Long day on the trails tomorrow.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Rainy Forecast

I hate to complain about rain, but as of now the forecast is 50 percent chance for Saturday's Texas Trail 50K. Ugh. I ran 2 miles on the roads at the park this evening, while everyone else ran trails.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Texas Trail 50K is On

I received an email from Roger Soler this morning telling me that the Texas Trail 50K this Saturday at Huntsville State Park has a 10-hour time limit, rather than 9 hours. In the 15 years that I have run this 50K, I have always finished in under 9 hours. However, with the hamstring problem, I an not sure. While my goal is to get in under 9 hours and not do anything to re-injure the hamstring, it is nice to know that I have some leeway. Roger always puts on a good race, so I am looking forward to the challenge. Hopefully, the rain will hold off until Sunday.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Late for Trail Run

I was at a meeting at the Chamber of Commerce this afternoon and was about 30 minutes late for our trail run. For 4 p.m. on a weekday, we had a big crowd. I ran 2 miles on the trails and the rest of the group was finished by the time I got back. I did not hear from Roger Soler today about the 50K this Saturday. I am just not sure I can run it within their new 9-hour time limit.

Monday, November 28, 2011

They Changed the Rules

I am registered to run the Texas Trail 50K this Saturday at Huntsville State Park. This will be my 16th consecutive year for this race. Their web site says there is a 10-hour time limit. I finished in 8:50 last year and figured this year with my hamstring problem it would take me over 9 hours. This evening, I received an email from them saying the time limit is 9 hours. Hopefully, the 10-hour limit is correct. I just emailed Roger Soler of Soler Sports in San Antonio, who is putting on the race, to ask for clarification. I would rather break my 15-year streak for this race rather than chance getting a DNF.
I loaded up on Ibruprofen today and ran laps at the track this evening.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cold and Windy

It was cold and windy this morning at the park. Good running weather. I ran 7 miles and no trips or falls. That will probably be my last run on trails until the 50K this Saturday.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Leftover Turkey 10K

I am really slow. I finished the Leftover Turkey 10K here in Huntsville this morning with a time of 1:28:05. That's exactly 16 minutes slower than the same race last year. It is an out and back course on the sidewalk along Veterans Memorial Parkway. All hills. And, it rained for the entire race. My old friend, Pete Cahill, was up from Seabrook and I ran much of the race with him. Have not seen him for a long time and we had a good visit.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Lots of Ibuprofen

I'm not sure if I aggravated the hamstring running the 5-miler yesterday, but I was hurting this morning. I took lot of Ibuprohen today and ran laps at the track this evening. I had thoughts of switching from the 10K to the 5K tomorrow, but I will make that decision in the morning. A couple weeks ago, I thought I would be fine by now. A week from tomorrow, I am running a 50K on the trails and then a road marathon the next weekend. Then, nothing long until January1.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Day

For the 10th straight year, I ran the Run Thru the Woods 5-Miler this morning down in The Woodlands. The first 9 years, all my times were between 51:10 and 58:56. My time this morning was 1:05:00. I realize that I am running slower with my injury; I just don't know how long before the pain goes away and I get my strength back. I have a lot of long runs scheduled in the next few months.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Signed up for the Texas Trail 50K

Today, I signed up for the Texas Trail 50K at Huntsville State Park on December 3. This is the replacement race for the Sunmart Texas Trail Endurance Run, which was held for 19 years and discontinued 3 years ago. This will be my 16th consecutive year for running this 50K (31 miles). It is a good thing that they have a 10-hour time limit; I may need it all. I had my last treatment on my hamstring this morning, but it will take a while to fully heal. December 3rd is also the day that our local 11 and 0 Sam Houston State Bearkats and ranked number 1 in the nation (small colleges) play their first playoff game. The race starts and 7 a.m. and the game at 2 p.m. At best, I will be able to only make the last part of the game.
I went to the track and ran laps this afternoon. Afterwards, I went to Nautilus to work out but they were closed for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Park Roads

We had a nice group at the park this evening. Rather, than taking a chance with tripping and messing up the hamstring, I ran 3 miles on the park roads, while everyone else ran trails. Nice cool weather, following a heavy rain last night (1 inch at my house).

Monday, November 21, 2011

Next to Last Treatment

I had my next to last treatment on my hamstring this morning. The last treatment will be on Wednesday. My insurance will not pay for any more treatments, so I am sure I will be healed then. I took a day off today and just ran 1.2 miles on the roads in town this evening.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Visiting at the Park

This morning, I went out to the park and did a solo run of 4.8 miles on the trails. I ran into a guy hiking the trails and he stopped me to talk. Turns out that he is 79. He was wearing headphones attached to an old Panasonic cassette tape player/recorder. It was the kind that is about a foot long with a handle. He proceeded to tell me some of his life stories and travels. I asked him where he lived and he said that he lived in his van and was very comfortabe in doing so. Interesting guy and he seemed to appreciate my stopping to visit.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Ten Total

I ran the new Running to Shine 5K on the campus in Huntsville this morning. I finished in 32:22. While a few months ago, I would have believed that time, but today I think the hilly course was a little short. I did run with a little less pain, though. Sort of a nothing race. It was put on by a group of college students for some worthy cause. No age group awards and the race was not timed. Nice T-shirt, but the race was not worth $25. After the race, I went out to the park and ran 7 miles alone on the trails. No trips or fall. That gave me ten miles total for the day.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tomorrow would have been the day

If it had not been cancelled, tomorrow would have been the day of the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon in Houston. I was really looking forward to the challenge of running up and down all the ramps. After the other challenge last Sunday on the flat marathon course in Fort Worth, I doubt that I could have made the 6 and a half hour cutoff in Houston, anyway. I had three treatments on my hamstring this week and have two more treatments next week. I am running a 5K on the campus here in Huntsville tomorrow morning at 9 a.m. I like the late starts, since I am not an early morning person.
I went to the track this evening and then went to Nautilus for a workout.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Club Meeting

We had our quarterly Seven Hills Running Club meeting at Margarita's Mexican Restaurant this evening. It was a productive meeting and it is always great to get together with friends and talk about running.
Earlier, I met up with the group at the park. While they ran trails, I ran 2 miles on the park roads.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Treatment Continues

I went in for another treatment on my hamstring this morning and have another appointment on Friday. It was not as sore today and maybe that is a sign it is getting better. My thoughts while running the last 6 miles of the marathon on Sunday was there was no way I was going to run a 50K on December 3. However, this 50K is one of my "streak races" and there is no way I am going to miss my 16th straight year. Now that the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon, scheduled for this Saturday, has been cancelled, I have more time to heal. There is a new 5K on campus Saturday morning and I went ahead and signed up.
After Nautilus this evening, I went to the track and ran roads from there. The distance turned out to be 1.7 miles.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Heavy Rain

According to my rain guage, we had just under 2 inches of rain this afternoon. That is the most since at least last Spring. No complaining. Hopefully that much will bring dead grass back to life.
The threat of rain this evening scared most of the trail runners away from the park. It was just me, Phillip and Jason that showed up and the weather ended up being nice. I ran 2 miles on the park roads while they ran trails.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Fort Worth Marathon

After running laps at the track on Saturday, I drove up to Fort Worth for the Fort Worth Marathon on Sunday. I ran the race last year and finished in 5:37:11. With the hamstring problem this year, I thought it would be closer to 6 hours. Was I wrong! It finished 7:09:25. The pain was constant for the entire time. I got so far behind that the aid stations were virtually all closed after 10 miles. The temperature got into the 80's and I had to scrounge for water to make it in. Most of the course was on a concrete or asphalt sidewalk along the Trinity River. Even my MP3 player would not work right. It was stuck on one Texas Tornados song. After hearing it for 10 times, I turned it off and went without music. I suppose a sane person would have quit. However, I have run 563 races and have never dropped out. It's a streak within my streak. To my surprize, they kept the finish line open and gave me an official time and a finishers medal, which can be removed from the ribbon and used as a belt buckle.
After the race, Marilynn and I drove through Dallas and over to Wylie to visit my son and his family. We spent Sunday night there and drove back to Huntsville late this morning. I got back in time to submit my bi-monthly column to the Huntsville Item and go to the doctor for my hamstring treatment. Later this evening, I went to the track and ran laps.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

At 11:11:11 this morning on the day of 11-11-11, I was in the doctor's office laying on a table with wires attached to my hamstring. That particular time won't come around for another 100 years. Hopefully, my hamstring will be healed by then.

Since it is Veterans Day, I will include the above photo taken in 1968 while I was serving with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam. It just does not seem that long ago. I had two brothers who served in WWII and three other brothers have served since. I also have a daughter who served in the Army and a son now in the Marines.

I went to the track this evening and ran laps.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Counting Down

Only a couple more days until my first marathon of the season in Fort Worth on Sunday. I am always apprehensive about running 26.2 miles, but more so this time because of my injured wheels. With the short runs this week and three treatments, maybe I will be okay.
This evening, I ran 2 miles on the roads at the park, while everyone else ran trails.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Another Easy Day

They turned up the power for my electrical stimulation treatments this morning. Hopefully, it will speed up the healing. After working out at Nautilus this evening, I went to the track and ran laps.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Rainy Day in Huntsville

It's not often that I say that. We had a little rain off and on all day. My rain gauge says a quarter inch total. I suppose it will take more than that to bring dead grass back to life.
I spent a couple hours at the state park today with Jennifer Burton, who is directing the first ever Orphan Hope Marathon at the park on February 11. She is working hard to make this a first class event and, based on early entries, it will be a big success. I plan on running it.
Because of a lack of daylight, we moved our Tuesday and Thursday park runs to 4:30 p.m. We had a light crowd today, only retired people and university professors, who probably no-showed for classes they were suppose to teach. Soon after we started running, it started raining hard. I ran 2 miles on the park roads.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Dark Run

I had a meeting at the university this afternoon about an upcoming local 5K and did not get out until about 5 p.m. I went straight to Nautilus for a workout and then for a short 1.2-mile road run in the dark. With the time change this past weekend, I have to get use to the shorter days.
There was a nice story about my Marine son, Tim, on the front page of today's local paper. Click HERE to for a link to the online version. We look forward to his return from Afghanistan.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Strategy

I am not sure what strategy to use to be as ready as possible for the Fort Worth Marathon next Sunday. My thought is just to do short runs everyday this week, take Ibuprohen and get my electronic treatments. I can get by without more distance training; I just need to get the soreness out of my hamstring and improve the strength. If I had to run the marathon yesterday, I doubt that I could have completed it in under 6 hours.
Today, I had family visiting. I went over to the track this afternoon and ran laps.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Rocky Raccoon 25K

I got up at 4:30 this morning and went out to the park for the Rocky Raccoon 25K. A little before 6 a.m., I drove Paula Boone and Sock Monkey Boone down to their road guard position on the course. We hiked the last quarter mile. The 25K race started at 7 a.m. My goal was to go slow and not do anything to make the hamstring worse. Other than running 15.5 miles with a sore hamstring, I seemed to accomplish my goal. I do not recall every running this course in more than 4 hours, but today I finished in 4:34:23. I have 3 appointments for treatment next week and hopefully I will be okay for the Fort Worth Marathon next Sunday. They have a 6-hour time limit, so I have to do better. It is a flat course and I ran it in 5:36 last year.
After finishing today, I drove out to the back side of the park and help take our club aid station down and haul the stuff in. Then, later this afternoon, Ben and I went back to the park and help the race director take down course markings. It was hard staying awake this evening to watch some good football games on TV.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon Cancelled

I received a letter and entry fee refund check today from the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon, which was scheduled for November 19. It has been cancelled due to a lack participants. Darn, I was looking forward to the challenge of running 22 laps across the field and up and down the ramps of all three levels of the stadium. I cannot imagine why there was an insufficient number of Houston runners signing up.
My computer would not connect to the Internet this morning and I spent much of today on the phone with AT&T. It turned out that my modem was bad and I had to drive down to Best Buy in Conroe this afternoon to buy a new one. Ran laps at the track when I got back and then went out to the park with James and Ben to set up the aid station in the back of the park that our club will operate for the Rocky Raccoon 50K and 25K tomorrow. Then, we hiked a couple miles on the trails to set up a turn sign at one of the trail intersections. I talked to AT&T again tonight and got connected again.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Perfect Trail Running Weather

It was cool, windy and clear this afternoon, perfect trail running weather. I went out to the park alone this afternoon and ran 3.5 miles in the woods. The hamstring spoke to me the entire distance, so I can imagine what it is going to be like running 25K (15.5 miles) this Saturday. Then, I have a week to prepare for the Fort Worth Marathon. We took our son, Ben, down to the Texas Roadhouse in Conroe this evening to celebrate his 28th birthday. We have family coming in on Sunday for more celebration.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Short Road Run

I had a second treatment on my left hamstring this morning, mowed my grass (the little that is not dead from the dought), worked out at Nautilus and then ran 1.6 miles on the roads in town. My friend, Willie Fritz, was running in an opposite direction and we stopped for a brief visit. Willie is the head football coach for the Sam Houston State Bearkats, which are 8 and zero and ranked number 4 among small colleges in the U.S. Willie is a good runner, too.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Signed up for the Miracle Match Marathon

I just signed up for the Miracle Match Marathon in Waco, Texas, which will be on January 29, 2012, two weeks after Houston and one week before the Rocky Raccoon 50-Miler at Huntsville State Park. I have run it twice before. While it is very hilly (mile 14 to 24), logistically it is easy. No big crowds, park close by and hang out at the hotel next to the start/finish line until the race starts.
My annual park pass expired yesterday, so I went to the park this morning to renew it. They went up 10 bucks to $70. Since I go there about 150 times a year, it is worth it. We had a large group for our Tuesday run this evening. We split up into about 4 groups, each running a different course. I ran 3 miles on the park roads, while everyone else ran trails.

Monday, October 31, 2011

First Treatment

I went in this morning for the first treatment on my left hamstring. Treatment consisted of 3 different electronic stimulations and ice. Two more appointments this week and three next week.
After working out at Nautilus this evening, I went to the track and ran 2.8 miles on the roads from there.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Switching, Again

I went out to the park this afternoon with the intention of running the 6.9-mile outer loop. A mile or so into my run, may hamstring told be to turn back. I ended up running 3.8 miles. It also told me to switch from the Rocky Raccoon 50K this Saturday to the 25K. I start my treatments on the left hamstring tomorrow morning. It will be my last switch, though. I am determined to run the Fort Worth Marathon on November 13 and the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon on November 19.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Rock the Mind 5K

My son, Ben, and I drove 50 miles to College Station this morning to run the Rock the Mind 5K. Robert Duncan and Skipper Nethery from Huntsville were also there. Nice weather - clear, sunny and in the 40's. The entire course was on concrete sidewalks. My hamstring was hurting worse and I took it easy. I am not sure what my time was. My watch said just under 38 minutes and the race clock said 37 minutes. In any case, I was 3rd place in the 60 and over age group. This afternoon, we went to the Sam Houston State and Lamar University football game. Sam won 66 to 0.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Regular Friday

Since I have a 5K race tomorrow morning in College Station and my hamstring is hurting, I went to the track this afternoon and ran laps. That seems to be my regular Friday.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Easy Trails

I ran an easy 3 miles on the trails at the park this evening. The last mile was in a heavy rain. That's the first time in many months that I ran in heavy rain. No complaining.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I hate to say it.

I hate to say it, but it looks like I have pulled the hamstring in the upper part of my left leg. And, just when my right leg is much better. Maybe I need to take up the sport of checkers. My first appointment for treatment is next Monday and I have a 50K (31 miles) the following Saturday (November 5). I may have to switch to the 25K and start my mrathon season the following weekend in Fort Worth.
In the meantime, after working out at Nautilus this evening, I ran 1.2 miles on the roads in town.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tour de Bayou, Stage 4

John, Leah, Hans and I went down to Houston this evening to run Stage 4 of the Tour de Bayou. The course was 3.5 miles cross country and on trails along the bayou near downtown Houston, with mosquitos chasing you all the way. I finished in 46:51.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Resting the Hamstring

After 13.1 miles on Saturday and 6.9 on Sunday and a sore hamstring today, I decided to rest. I ran 1.2 miles on the roads this evening.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Return to Trails

I ran 6.9 miles on the trails at the park this afternoon. It was my first trail run since September 11.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Huntsville Half Marathon

I ran the Huntsville Half Marathon this morning and finished in 2:57:27, meeting my goal of finishing under 3 hours. Got 2nd place in the 70 and over age group (yes, there was only two of us). The skies were clear and the temperature got into the mid-80's. We had a total of 422 registered runners for the Half Marathon and 5K.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Resting up for Tomorrow

The hilly as heck Huntsville Half Marathon is tomorrow. My goal is to beat my Tyler Half Marathon time from two weeks ago. Looks like we will have well over 400 runners running the half and the 5K. I am looking forward to with many friends that I have not seen in a while. My good friend, Marvin Dittfurth, and I will be racing together for the first time in many years. Also looking forward to hearing international opera star, Melanie Holliday, sing the National Anthem. I have to get there early to set up the race clock, the finish chutes and deliver the trophies.
This afternoon, I ran 1.2 miles on the roads in town. I feel like I am well-rested for tomorrow. Maybe, too rested.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Back to the Routine

I got the "Where have you been" comments when I went into Nautilus this evening. It has been so long that I felt like I had to start over. After working working out, I went to the park and ran 3 miles on the park roads. Nice cool weather.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Back from North Carolina

Just got back from visiting my daughter and her family in Richlands, North Carolina. I drove 715 miles today and went to the track at 10 tonight to run laps.
On October 9, I ran the Tyler Rose Half Marathon in Tyler, Texas. I ran slow and steady and luckily did not trip on the red brick streets. My concern was not to do anything to reinjure my hamstring. Hilly course and a temperature up in the 80's. The finish line was in the middle of the largest municipal rose garden in the U.S. Nice setting. I finished in 3:00:41 (1st place of two in my age group). However, I had regrets about not running the full marathon.
The next day, I left from Tyler and drove to Lincoln, Alabama. Got there just in time to get in a run before it got too dark. Drove on to Richlands the next day. When I stopped for gas somewhere in South Carolina, I went for a run along the highway and up and down a road leading to the local landfill.
Had a great stay with my daughter, grandson and granddaughter. Her husband is a Marine in Afghanistan. Ran one day with my grandson and spent a day with him at a Cub Scout day camp. Had lunch with him at his school twice and went to his tumbling class. Also, went to my 4 year old granddaughter's ballet/tap dance class. Got in a run everyday in the town of Richlands.
Left North Carolina yesterday and drove to Ogden, Alabama. Ran there last night upon arrival. That run completed two years on my current running streak. I still have a long ways to go to get back to my longest streak of 6 years, 9 months and 18 days.
I drove back to Huntsville today.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Signed Up for Rocky Raccoon 50-Miler

Last night, I signed up for the Rocky Raccoon 50-Mile Trail Run at Huntsville State Park on February 4, 2012. It was a new distance for me last year and I enjoyed the experience. Hopefully, this year it will be cold again, but hopefully, no icy bridges.
This morning, I went over to College Station to run the Ram Run 5K. I did not realize that it was Cross Country. With this drought in Texas, the ground in cracked. So, I had to be careful not to trip in one of the crevaces. I finished in 38:46, which was good enough for 1st place in my age group. Actually, any time would have been good enough, since I was the only one there 70 and over.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday Off

Since I have a 5K race tomorrow and a half marathon the next day, I took today off and ran laps at the track. Besides, we have a 30% chance of rain today and I want to sit on the back porch and watch for it.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Switching to the Half Marathon on Sunday

I am definitely switching from the Tyler Rose Marathon to the Half Marathon on Sunday. With my training, or lack of it, in the past few weeks, even the half marathon will be a challenge. I was in for a treatment on my hamstring today and it will probably be my last. Most of the pain is gone; I just have to build strength.
In the meantime, I am staying off the trails at the park. I went out there this evening and ran 3 miles on the park roads, while the rest of the group ran trails.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

5 Miles

After working out at Nautilus this evening, I ran 5 miles on the roads in town. Ran into Jesse Parker, SHSU Cross Country Coach, walking his dog by the Huntsville Prison Unit. We stopped and visited for a while.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Tour de Bayou, Stage 1

I met up with John and Leah this evening and we drove down to Hans' house in Conroe. From there, we all went down to Houston for Stage 1 of the fall Tour de Bayou series. The race is in what looks like a large bowl. You run up and down the steep banks and some on the rim of the bowl. All cross country. They said the course was 2.9 miles. I think I got off the course and ran a little extra. In any case, I finished in about 37 minutes. Nice cool weather, and, of course, no mud. I had another treatment on my hamstring this morning and it felt okay this evening. I am just anxious to get through the half marathon in Tyler this weekend without messing it up.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Signed up for Fort Worth Marathon

I just signed up for the Fort Worth Marathon, which will be on November 13, one week after the Rocky Raccoon 50K and one week before the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon. I ran Fort Worth last year and had one of my fastest times.
I received my new $500 custom orthotics in the mail today and ran in them this evening. For that much money, they should have little jet engines or something. In any case, I ran 2.9 miles on the roads in town and they were very comfortable.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Catching Up

I ran laps at the track Friday before heading for Wylie (northeast of Dallas) to spend the weekend with my son and his family. On Saturday morning, I ran the St. Anthony's Fall Festival 5K in Wylie. Good running weather and a flat course. I finished in 38:01. While this was still way off my normal 5K time, it was much better than the 46:50 for my 5K one week earlier. My hamstring is obviously getting better. I was the only one in my age group, so I picked up a 1st in age group medal. Also won a door prize ($20 gift certificate to Dick's Sporting Goods). I drove back to Huntsville this afternoon and got back just in time to drive 49 miles down to The Woodlands for the Sunday Night 5K - for the 23rd time. I finished in 36:37.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Back Up to Five

I went out to the park ahead of the group this evening and ran 3 miles on the road and then ran another 2 miles with Hans. On the way back to the Nature Center, we were stopped twice and asked if we had seen smoke. They said a pilot reported smoke in the park during a flyover. When we got back to the Nature Center, there were firemen from the Texas Forest Service standing by, along with two 18 wheelers with bulldozers. I guess they never found the fire, if there was one.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Getting Better

I think my hamstring is gradually getting better. I ran 2.7 miles on the roads in town. While I still have pain above my knee, I seem to lifting my right leg more when I run. I have another appointment for treatment tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Park Roads

I had a treatment on my hamstring this morning and then met up with the group at the park this evening. I ran 3 miles on the park roads, while they ran trails. While I still ran slow and with a limp, there was not a much pain. My plan now is to switch from the marathon to the half marathon in Tyler on October 9.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Good Day

I ran 1.8 miles on the roads this evening. My hamstring was not much better, but the Cowboys beat the Redskins tonight. That makes it a good day.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Continuation

I am continuing to recover. My hamstring felt better today - until I started running. I did a 1.2-mile loop on the roads. I know that I cannot run the Tyler Marathon on October 9; the question is whether I will be able to do the half marathon option.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Fall Fun Run 5K


We had our club's annual Fall Fun Run 10K, 5K and 1-Mile this morning on the hilly out and back course along Veterans Memorial Parkway. We had a total of 43 runners for all three races. I opted for the 5K and slowly ran the entire distance. While I did so with a limp and in some pain, it was a lot more comfortable than the 5K last Saturday. We shared the course with several hundred participating in a 5-mile military ruck march. That made it interesting, especially with a B-17 (WWII bomber) flyover. Great weather, not too hot.

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Culprit

This is the back of my right leg, showing the bruise from my latest hamstring tear. Anyway, I went to the track this afternoon and ran another limpy mile. This is getting old. We have a 10K and 5K here in Huntsville tomorrow morning and I planned to do the 10K. I'm not even sure at this point whether I should even do the 5K.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bruised

I went in for treatment on my hamstring this morning and they noticed the back of my leg above the knee was swollen and bruised. They said it was from new tears in the hamstring. The original problem was higher in my leg where the hamstring connects in the pelvic area. They think it happened when I fell at the track last week. Anyway, I still have to take it easy and continue to get treatments twice a week. This afternoon, I drove down to Memorial Park in Houston for the Houston Marathon Kickoff Party. Got to visit with a lot of good friends. Afterwards, I ran about a mile and a half on the Memorial Park trail. It was terrible to see so many dead trees from the drought. There must be thousands.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wide Turn

If my recovery from the hamstring is making a turn, it's a wide turn. After working out at Nautilus this evening, I ran 2 miles on the roads in town. Still painful, but I did not have to drag my foot as much. Ran into my friend, Willie Fritz, Head Coach of the SHSU Football Team. He was running the other way, but we stopped for a short visit. I also ran within a couple blocks of the Walls Prison and they had the roads blocked off for an execution.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Turning the Corner, Maybe

I ran 1-mile+ on the roads at the park this evening and the hamstring was not as painful as it has been. Still slow and limping, though. Earlier today, I received a treatment at the hamstring fixing place.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Continuation

I ran a gimpy 1.2-mile course on the roads this evening. The sharp pain seems to have moved from the pelvic area to the back of my leg. Maybe that is a good sign. I have a treatment appointment tomorrow morning and I will ask.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

700

According to my calculations, my current running streak is now 700 days. Of course, I have been well over 700 in two previous streaks, so it is no big deal. Over the years, I have had to do some painful one-mile runs to keep my streak alive, but usually it is just for a day or so. Today, was another one-mile run at the track. While fighting the hamstring problem, the pain in my foot (plantar faciitis) has subsided. That's good news and my new custom orthotics should be in soon. My goal this week is to get the hamstring problem fixed (have two treatment appointments) and do a 10K on Saturday and long run on Sunday.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Buffalo Stampede 5K

Marilynn and I drove an hour up to Buffalo for the Buffalo Stampede 5K this morning. It was an out and back course on a rough oil roads. I ran the first mile+, as slow and painfully as yesterday. After that, I did a combination of walking and running. Three people in cars stopped and asked me if I needed a ride. I finished with a PW and first place in the "Super Senior Division." Obviously, I was the only one in that division. Marilynn walked the entire course and got 2nd in her age group. After the race, we visited the local festival and then stopped in Centerville on the way back to Huntsville and had breakfast at the Town Cafe. My hope of recovery in time to run the Tyler Marathon on October 9 is fading fast.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Frustrating

This darn hamstring is starting to be frustrating. Another slow and painful mile at the track this afternoon. I have decided to try the 5K in Buffalo tomorrow. I will run the first mile and then if I have to, walk the rest. Don't expect me to report my finish time.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Another Mile

I went out to the park this evening after everyone else was already running trails and ran a little over a mile on the park roads. My hamstring was slightly better, but I stayed on level roads. I will see how it feels tomorrow. I have already signed up for a 5K in Buffalo, Texas on Saturday. It is a small race in a small town and they have a festival going on in the town after the race. I will decide tomorrow whether to attempt it and probably get a 5K PW (personal worst).

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Ditto

I went to the track again tonight about 10 and ran a slow and painful mile. No improvement from yesterday. Maybe it will turn around tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Slow and Painful Mile

After going to the doctor and getting a treatment on my hamstring, icing it all day and taking a lot of Ibuprofen, I went to the track tonight at 10 and ran a slow and painful mile. The good news is that I did not have pain shooting up into my back like yesterday and I never fell. The streak is still alive.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sitting on Ice

To rest my hamstring, I decided to take a day off and run laps at the track. It was worse than I thought. On the first lap, I had sharp pains in my hip and pain shooting up into my back. I had thoughts of having to break my streak. However, I was determined to get in a mile. It was not a pretty sight, but I kept running. On the fourth lap, my leg collapsed and I fell. However, I got up right away and finished. Tonight, I am sitting on ice and watching Monday Night Football. I'll see what happens tomorrow.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9/11 Thoughts

I seldom veer from the topic of running, but today marks the 10th anniversary of a very important day in American history. I worked at the Pentagon twice. The first time from May 1962 to April 1965. I started there as a PFC in the Army and got promoted to SP4, Sergeant and then Staff Sergeant. I met my wife, Marilynn, in the Pentagon in 1965. She was working there after high school. I was assigned there again in 1979 as a Major and left in 1982 as a Lt. Colonel. So, I spent 6 years in that building and I knew it so well. In 1974-76, I was assigned to Heidelberg, Germany as a captain. One of my buddies and co-workers was Captain Tim Maude. I never saw Tim again and I retired from the Army in 1984. I found out after 9/11/01 that Tim had been promoted to Lt. General (3 stars) and was the senior military officer killed at the Pentagon on 9/11. Click here for his story.
A couple years ago, I was attended my 50th high school class reunion in Tyler, Texas. I was visiting with my classmate, William Allen. William became the Editor-in-Chief of the National Geographic Magazine and had recently retired. He was telling me that he was scheduled to be on the plane that hit the Pentagon. They were taking some kids, who had won a photo contest, on a trip. At the last minute, they were problems with the upcoming edition of the magazine, so William had to cancel and send an assistant in his place.
We lost a lot of great Americans on 9/11 and so many more since in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Back to running. I went out to the park late this morning and did a 6.9-mile solo run on the trails. My hamstrings tell me that I need to take a few days off. I still have time for some long runs before the marathon on October 9, so I may just do short runs the next few days.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Burritos and Beer

Yesterday, I ran laps at the track before heading for New Braunfels for the Gruene 10K this morning. Because of the wildfires around Bastrop and road closures, I had to take the long way to get to New Braunfels, 200 miles, 4 hours and heavy rush hour traffic in Austin. It was very painful sitting on my hamstrings that long and I had to stop and walk around several times. The race was at Gruene Hall, which is the oldest dance hall in Texas (built in the 1880's). Nice weather this morning and a nice race. There were about a thousand runners. After the race, they served burritos and beer and live country music. I finished in 1:16:38 (4th of 5 in my age group). I made the drive back to Huntsville, with several stops to get off my hamstrings. I took a 30-minute nap and then drove 100+ miles to Frankston, Texas to attend my nephew's retirement party. He is retiring after serving 32 years as a Texas State Trooper. Got back home about an hour ago. Long day.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Two Appointments Today

I had my semi-annual appointment with a doctor this morning in The Woodlands to check my skin for spots. He only froze one spot off my forehead. While in The Woodlands, I stopped at Luke's Locker and bought a bottle of Electrolyte capsules for my training and marathon season. Also stopped at Academy and stocked up on GU (carbohydrate concentrate). They had them at half price! So, I am ready for the marathon season. This afternoon, I had my appointment with my regular doctor for my annual physical. I have to go to the lab tomorrow morning for blood work.
I did not have time to work out at Nautilus, but I did go out to the park to meet up with the group. I ran a 6.5-mile loop on the trails and finished just before dark.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Late Morning Run

I got in a short 1.3-mile road run this morning before heading to Houston for my appointment with Podiatrist, Dr. Jeff Ross. His wall is covered with photos of him crossing the finish lines at marathons with people, such as Rick Perry and Mike Huckabee. Also, plenty of photos of he and both President Bush's. We had Dr. Ross as a guest speaker at our club meeting several years ago and other podiatrists showed up to hear him speak. He is the best. He prescribed some treatments for my sore plantar faciitis and cast my feet for new custom orthotics. I should get them in a couple weeks. In the meanwhile, it will be a challenge to train for the marathon on October 9.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Gotta Love this Cooler Weather

There was no high wind today and I have not heard of any new wild fires in our county. I had an appointment today for treatment of my hamstring. It does not seem to be doing much good. It is especially painfull when I drive and first get out of my vehicle. After a couple miles running, the pain subsides. My plantar faciitis is still very painful. Tomorrow afternoon, I have an appointment with Dr. Jeff Ross in Houston to be fitted for new custom orthotics. Hopefully, he can give me something for the pain in the meantime.
I ran 4.8 miles on the trails at the park this evening and was careful not to do anything to aggravate the hamstrings or sore foot.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Not as Hot

I could get use to running in this less than 100 degree weather. While it was not as hot today, there was smoke in the air from the wild fires in the area. No rain lately and none in sight. I went to the track this evening and ran a couple miles on the roads. Earlier, I mowed my lawn, or what's left of it.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Sunday Night 5K

I went down to The Woodlands this evening for the monthly Sunday Night 5K. For the first time in a long time, the temperature was not around 100. I finished in 35:25. While this is still a couple minutes slower than my usual, it is my best in a couple months. Maybe the hamstrings are getting better.
This race was also a minor milestone; it was my 550th race since I started racing in 1983.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

15 Miles

I went out to the park this morning and did a 15-mile solo run on the trails.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Appointments Next Week

I was just looking at my calendar. Next Tuesday, I have an appointment with the chiropractor for treatment of my hamstring. The next day, I have an appointment with Dr. Jeff Ross, podiatrist in Houston, to get my plantar faciitis checked out and get fitted for new custom orthotics. On Thursday morning, I have an appointment with Dr. Yee, plastic surgeon in The Woodlands for a periodic check of my skin to make sure I do not have any pre-cancerous spots that need to be burned off. Later on Thursday, I have an appointment with my doctor in Huntsville for my annual physical. Later this month, I have my dental checkup. So, by the end of this month, I should be in good shape and ready for the Tyler Marathon on October 8. Glad I have good insurance.
It's Friday and I plan on doing a long run tomorrow, so I went to the track this afternoon and ran laps.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Mid-Afternoon Trails

Since I was going to the Sam Houston State/Western Illinois football game at 6 this evening, I went out to the park at 3 p.m. and did a 5-mile solo run on the trails. Hot and dry. Did not see a person or other creature on the trails.
Sam won 20-6.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Squeezed in a Run

I had an appointment for treatment of my hamstring today and had to be in Houston at 4 p.m. for a family thing, so I went out to the park early this afternoon and ran 2.2 miles on the trails.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Nursing the Foot

I called the Podiatrist's office today and was able to move my appointment up one day to September 7. They suggested that I buy and use over the counter orthotics in the meantime. I had bought a pair several years ago and still had them. I put those in my shoes and ran 3 miles on the trails at the park this evening. I was careful with my footing so as not to aggravate my plantar faciitis. At one point, the pains were sharp, but I iced it when I got got home.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Road Run

This morning, I made a September 8 appointment with Podiatrist, Dr. Jeff Ross in Houston. He made custom orthotics for me before and he is suppose to be the best. Governor Rick Perry is one of his patients. In the meantime, I went to the track this evening and ran the roads from there. I had some sharp pain in my foot and limited my run to 2.5 miles.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Run and Ice

I went out to the park this morning and ran 2.8 miles on the trails and then went home and iced my plantar faciitis. Tomorrow, I will get an appointment with a podiatrist for treatment and probably, new orthotics.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Falling Apart

Now, on top of knee problems and two pulled hamstrings, my right plantar faciitis is hurting. It started a couple days ago and it was very painful running the Run the Woodlands 5K this morning. Stinging pain. I had problems with it many years ago and ended up having the spurs in that heel surgically removed. I have been running with custom orthotics for at least 10 years and have had no more problems with it until this week. The Army made a pair for me about a year ago and I suspect they were made without much care. For example, they took a lazer image of one foot and reversed the image to get an image of the other foot. My plan is to see a podiatrist next week and go from there. I ran 36:25 in the 5K this morning. My plan was to do a long run at the park tomorrow. I iced it a couple times today and will wait and see how it feels tomorrow.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Woke Up to High Temperatures

The rain yesterday morning must have been a fluke. Today, it was back to the 100+ temperature and sunny skies. Tomorrow, it is suppose to get up to 107. It's Friday and I have a race tomorrow, so I ran mid-day laps at the track. No one else there to run with. This evening, Ben and I went fishing again at the same pier as a few days ago. The same darn alligator was there at the pier eating or scaring away the fish. From what I saw, the alligator got one and Ben and I got none.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Woke Up to the Sound of Rain

I woke up this morning to the rare sound of rain. After so long without rain, it was nice to get enough to wet the ground. However, there is no more rain in the forecast and it is suppose to get up to 108 on Sunday, when I plan to do a long run. Heat or not, I have to train for that first marathon of the season on October 9.
This evening, I ran an easy 3 miles on the trails, being carefult not to trip and aggravate the hamstrings.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Marathon Changes

If you have read my blog for a while, you will realize that I not only run every day, I have races that I do every year and even marathon series that I do every year. Guess I'm a streaker at heart. One streak I am breaking this year after 9 consecutive years is the Bearkat Bash 5K in Spring. They increased the early entry fee to $30. I called the race director and told her it was too high for a 5K. While it is probably for a good cause, the general running public (including me) does not care what the cause is. I race for other reasons.
I just found out today that the Texas Trail 50K (I have completed the last 15 years) has been moved from December 10 to December 3. I had planned to run it on the 10th and then drive over to College Station (50 miles) and run the BCS Marathon the next day. Now, the Texas Trail 50K is the day before the White Rock Marathon in Dallas, which is part of the Marathons of Texas series (White Rock, Houston and Austin), which I have done for the last two years. So I am thinking about skipping White Rock and Austin and the Marathons of Texas series this year, which means that I would not have to do two marathons in a weekend twice this season. I'll probably just wait and see how my training goes and how my hamstrings hold up in my first marathon of the season in Tyler on October 9.
In the meantime, I am signed up for the Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon in Houston on November 19. I have contacted a lot of runner friends and cannot find anyone else running the marathon or the half marathon event. I emailed the race director and asked how many are signed up. He answered my email, but did not answer the question. My guess is that there are not many. He said that they are putting out a news release for the Houston Chronical in a couple weeks. I hope that they are not thinking about cancelling the race. I am looking forward to running a 1.2 mile course across the playing field and up and down the ramps to three levels - 22 times.
I went to the track this evening and ran a new course on the roads in town. The college students are back in town, so I avoided the streets around the campus. While I was running, a thunderstorm blew in and I headed back toward the track. I ended up running 2.1 miles. While it rained in town, there was very little rain at my house, three miles west. Maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Maybe I'm Getting Use to the Heat

This was another usual day with 100+ heat, yet it was not bad at the park at 6 p.m. The group split up into two groups, running different courses and distances. I ran 4.1 miles on the trails with one group. My hamstrings and knee did not bother me too much. My friend, Loren Sheffer from Houston, joined us for the first time.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Now, a Knee Issue

After doing the 10 miles on the trails yesterday, I developed pain in my left knee. I have been treating it with Topricin, which my friend, Loren Sheffer, gave me earlier. It felt better later today and I ran 1.6 miles on the roads in town. The good news is that it took my mind off the hamstring pain.
I spent a couple hours in meetings at the Chamber of Commerce today, helping them get a new 5K off the ground on December 3, 2011. They are getting a lot of support from the community and I am sure it will be a successful race.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Double Digits, Finally

With my first marathon of the season less than 2 months away, I finally got in a 10-mile run today. I went out to the park about 9 this morning and ran the whole thing on the trails. I ran slow and was careful not to trip on roots and aggravate my hamstrings. I'll see how the hamstrings are tomorrow.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Heat Wave 5K

We had our club's annual Heat Wave 5K this morning. It is an out and back course on the sidewalk along hilly Veterans Memorial Drive. The race name fit the conditions. Hot and no shade. We had 46 runners. I finished in 37:27, about 3 minutes slower than last year. A bunch of us went to the Cafe Texan on the downtown square for breakfast after the race.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Fishing at the Park

I usually blog about running at Huntsville State Park, but this afternoon, my son, Ben, and I went fishing at the park. We did not catch anything. I believe that the alligator at the fishing pier had something to do with it. He (or she) kept coming from beneath the pier and swimming past our fishing lines and then going back under the pier.
This evening, I went over to the track and ran laps. Race tomorrow.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Run in the Rain

The group seemed to go in different directions and distances at the park this evening. I was 2 miles into a 3-mile park road run, when a thunderstorm came through. The lightning was bad, so I took cover in the lodge entry way for a few minutes. The mile back to the Nature Center was in a light rain. It was the first rain in several weeks and it felt great. As I drove the 9 miles back to Huntsville, I noticed that the streets were dry. Then, as I got to my neighborhood 3 miles west of Huntsville, it was obvious that it had rained. I am sure that most of it went into the cracks in my yard, but it was the first rain in so long.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Easy Day

After 5 miles yesterday, my hamstrings were very sore today. So, I ran an easy 2 miles on the roads in town this evening. I was at the doctor earlier for treatment. It's less than 2 months until my first marathon of the season and I am getting concerned about being ready.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Another 5

I was tempted to run trails with the group this evening, but I did a 5-mile solo run on the park roads, instead. I have another appointment with the doctor for electronic treatments on my hamstring tomorrow.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Seemed Cooler

I know that it was over 100 again today, but for some reason it seemed cooler this evening when I ran 3 miles on the roads in town.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

5 Miles

I got to the park later this morning than I had planned. It was hot and my hamstrings were hurting. I resisted the temptation to run trails and ran 5 miles on the park roads, instead. The heat index was well over 100 and I was soaked with sweat by the time I finished.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Blues Capital of Texas 5K

I drove 45 minutes this morning over to Navasota for the 1st Blues Capital of Texas 5K. There were 71 runners in the race. Half the course was cross country. The only problem with that is the ground had large cracks from the drought. I had to slow down some to avoid stepping in a crack or hole. The race was at 8 a.m., but the heat was tough. I was drenched with sweat when I finished. Wet socks and shoes, included. My time was 36:36 (2nd in age group). After the race, I drove to The Woodlands for an interview with the Shoe Manager at Luke's Locker. I have to write my column for the newspaper this weekend and I am writing on what's new with running shoes. I got back to Huntsville in time for the Seven Hills Running Club picnic. Had a good visit with a lot of friends and ate too much.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Trip to Lufkin

The Lufkin Area Pace Setters (LAPS) had an appreciation dinner for the outgoing prez, Mike Burton. I am a member and Mike has done a great job in putting together a very successful running club. Lufkin is an hour and a half from Huntsville, but a nice easy drive. I went over for the dinner tonight and had a great visit with Mike and other members. Before leaving Huntsville, I went to the track and ran laps in the 100+ heat of the afternoon. Tomorrow, I have a 5K in Navasota, Texas and a 20% chance of rain here in Huntsville. Of course, that means that there is an 80% chance that it will not rain.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Cooler Weather Must be Near

The NFL Pre-Season has started, so cooler weather must be near. It did not start today; maybe tomorrow. It was 102 when we got to the park to run this evening. Because of the hamstring problem, I ran 3 miles on the roads at the park while everyone else ran trails. Maybe it is the Ibuprofen I have taken the last couple of days, but my hamstrings were not as sore today. This weekend, I need to test them with a long run.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Continuing Hamstring Saga

I had breakfast this morning with my son, Ben, at the Cafe Texan on the downtown square. (It is the oldest continually operated restaurant in Texas). Later this morning, I went to the doc for more electronic treatments on my hamstring. It does not seem to be getting better and I am concerned about all the marathons that I have signed up for. In the heat of the afternoon (about 104), I went to the park to finish measuring the course for the Orphan Hope Marathon in February. While there with the measuring wheel, I went ahead and measured some other trails that we run on a regular basis. So, I ended up walking about 5 miles with the measuring wheel. I finished up and drove 10 miles home and then realized that I left my measurement notes on the top of my truck and drove off. I went back to the park and luckily found them in the parking lot. Whew! I then went to Nautilus for a workout and then to the track and from there, a 2-mile run on the roads.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Lots of Sand on the Trails

It has been so long since we have had rain, that some sections of trails at the park are becoming sand pits. The temperature was over a 100 when the group ran this evening. We ran 3.8 miles.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Later Run

We went out to dinner early and I waited until after 7 to workout at Nautilus and go run. My hamstrings were hurting worse than usual. I ran a couple miles on the roads and then a half mile at the track. It is so dry here in Huntsville, that there are wide and deep cracks in the track, sorta like my yard.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sunday Night 5K

For the 21st time, I went down to The Woodlands this evening to run The Woodlands Running Club's Sunday Night 5K. Bill Dwyer also does a great job in putting on this race. The temperature was in the high 90's with over 70% humidity. I finished in 36:16, about 2 minutes slower than the same race last month, but about 1 minute faster than my last couple of 5K's. It was the day after the Sunday Night 5K last month when I pulled the hamstring in my right leg in the 5K in Centerville. While both hamstrings hurt, I am encouraged by my improvement tonight. Maybe all the electronic treatments I have gotten in the last 3 weeks are helping.
On the way down to The Woodlands this evening, I stopped at the Health South Rehab Center just north of The Woodlands to visit my friend and age group competitor, Jerry Flanagan. He broke his hip in the race in Huntsville last Saturday and had surgery to replace parts of his hip on Monday. He is suppose to be in the Rehab Center for 7 to 10 days. He seems to be recovering well.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Late Run

I spent several hours in the heat of the day at Huntsville State Park with John and Elaine from Houston measuring the course for the Orphan Hope Trail Marathon on February 11, 2012. I think the course takes in the best trails that the park offers. We got most of it done. We walked 10 miles with a measuring wheel. I should be able to finish it up this week. I look forward to running the race in February. Click HERE for a link to registration.
I was busy for the rest of the day. We went to church at 6 this evening and then out to dinner. Finally, I went to the track after 10 p.m. and ran laps.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Finding Jesus

Every day now it is over 100 degrees and the forecast shows the same for the next 8 days. I ran 3 miles on the roads about 6 this evening. I recall a few years ago that an elderly lady stopped me while I was running on a hot summer evening and chewed me out for running in the heat. She said that she hopes that I find Jesus, so He would teach me not to run when it was so hot. Of course, the reason I run is so I don't meet Him too soon.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Hot

Just like in most parts of the country, it was hot in Huntsville today - 105 degrees this afternoon. I ran 3.8 miles at the park with the group this evening and when we finished about 7 p.m., it was 102. In my email correspondence with my son in Afghanistan, we always have discussion about the heat. I suppose the heat is worse over there. I always remember the heat and humidity in Vietnam. We had to drink water all day to stay hydrated.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

When are they going to get better?

My hamstrings are still hurting, especially the right one. It has been a month tomorrow since I pulled it. I had treatments today and another appointment on Friday. With three different electronic stiumulation treatments, it always seems worse after the treatment. I am now convinced that my left leg collapsing several times this past year is a left hamstring problem. It is just over 2 months until my first marathon of the season and I am starting to wonder if I will be ready. Plus, it is so darn out, 105 degrees today and the same tomorrow. I was short of time this evening and kept my run to 2 miles on the road at 6 p.m.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Trails-Roads

The group met up at the park this evening, but we all seemed to be running a different course. I ran about 2 miles on the trails (being careful not to trip and worsen my hamstrings) and then about 1 mile on the park roads. I have to get my distance up soon; its just so hard when the temperature and humidity is so high, not to mention hurting hamstrings. Maybe I need to change my lifestyle and get up early in the morning to run. Ugh!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Clearing Woods

I woke up this morning to the sound of bulldozers. They were clearing the wooded lot next to my house. Several months ago, they cleared the other side of my lot to build a road. I left 50 feet of woods in the back when we cleared out lot to build, so that is safe.
I ran a different course on the roads this evening. With the heat, the course seemed a lot longer than it was. I checked it afterwards and it was 2.8 miles. Later this evening, I visited my friend, Jerry Flanagan, in the hospital. He had surgery this morning to fix his broken hip from Saturday's 5K race. He is doing well, but he will not be running for a while.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Marathon Schedule Taking Shape

My 2011/12 marathon schedule is taking shape. Hopefully, my hamstrings will be healed soon. I have appointments for two more treatments this week. Here is the schedule so far (* means that I have registered):
October 9 - Tyler Rose Marathon*
October 15 - Marathon2Marathon
November 5 - Rocky Raccoon 50K Trail Run*
November 13 - Fort Worth Marathon
November 19 - Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon*
December 4 - White Rock Marathon
December 10 - Texas Trail 50K
December 11 - BCS Marathon*
January 1 - Texas Marathon*
January 15 - Houston Marathon*
January 29 - Miracle Match Marathon
February 4 - Rocky Raccoon 50-Mile Trail Run
February 11 - Orphan Hope Trail Marathon
February 18 - Surfside Beach Marathon*
February 19 - Austin Marathon
March 3 - The Woodlands Marathon*
March 10 - Gusher Marathon
March 18 - Seabrook Marathon*
All 18 of these are Texas marathons. The challenge will be two doubles (2 marathons on the same weekend). I ran a double year before last and in retrospect, it was not that difficult. I ran faster the second day. I am convinced it is 90 percent mental.
I got up late this morning and went out to the park and ran 3 miles on the park roads. I finished up just about the same time the group was finishing their longer trail run.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Dog Days 5K

I got up early and put out the signs and set up the race clock for our running club's annual Dog Days 5K. My running 70 & Over running competition in the race was my old friend, Jerry Flanagan. About a half mile into the race, I saw him leave the course and run into an apartment complex, apparently trying to find a place to use the restroom. I figured that he would eventually catch up with me, but never saw him again until he was in an ambulance at the finish line. He had climbed over a fence in that apartment complex to find privacy. Then, he fell off the fence and broke his hip. Later, I visited with him in the Emergency Room and bragged about winning the 70 & Over age group. He will have surgery in a few days and hopefully he will recover quickly. My finish time at the race was a slow 37:30.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Signed up for New Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon

I just signed up for the new Reliant Stadium Indoor Marathon on November 19. The course starts on the field and runs up and down the ramps to all levels within the stadium. You finish the 1.2-mile course back on the field. For the marathon, you run it 22 times. Sure sounds like fun to me. Assuming my hamstrings heal okay, I will do 3 or 4 marathons before November 19, including the Fort Worth Marathon the weekend before.
I had my 3rd hamstring treatment this morning and have 2 appointments next week. It was hurting more today, so I went to the track this afternoon and ran laps.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Rain, Finally

We finally got some rain this afternoon, about 30 minutes worth. I am sure that most of it went down the deep and wide cracks in my yard, but hopefully some of it will reach the parched grass roots. We ran trails at the park this evening and it was like a sauna. We did 3.6 miles. In 17 years of running trails at the park, I cannot remember it every being that hot and humid.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Measuring Trails

After my appointment for treatment of my hamstring, I met up with Lloyd Cain at the state park. He is the cross country coach at Onalaska, Texas HS and was trying to work out a course at the park for his runners. Lloyd lives in Livingston, Texas and he and I go back for nearly 25 years. He was president of the running club in Livingston and he use to put on a lot of good races. I was a member of his club before it shut down. I have not seen him for years, so we had a good visit today. We measured some trails and worked out a plan for his team.
I then went to Nautilus for a workout and ran 2 miles on the roads in town. Darn, it was hot today. There is a tropical storm in the Gulf and hopefully we will get some rain in the next few days. My yard is so dry and cracked I fear walking across it because I may step in a crevasse and sprain an ankle.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Roads Instead of Trails at the Park

I met up with the group at the park this evening, but I ran 3 miles on the park roads while they were running trails. I intend to minimize trail running until my hamstrings are healed.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Hamstrings Felt Better

My hamstrings felt better today. Maybe the treatments are catching up. I ran a new course on the roads in town this evening after working out at Nautilus. Even ran some streets that I had never run before. I measured it online later and it turned out to be a 3.1 miles (5K). It had rained in town an hour earlier and maybe that it is why I felt better. Now, if we can just get some rain at my house 3 miles west of town.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Another Recovery Run

My right hamstring was hurting today, so I took another Celebrex and ran 1.2 miles on the roads this evening.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Run the Woodlands 5K

I ran slow and steady this morning. Finished the 5K in 37:33, which was probably my slowest time ever on that flat course. My goal was not to re-injure my hamstrings and I accomplished that.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Third Treatment this Week

I went in today for the 3rd treatment this week on my hamstring and have 3 more appointments next week. It was really sore this evening, so I ran a mile at the track. I have a 5K race tomorrow morning in The Woodlands.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Mostly Trails

I was hesitant about running trails this evening for fear that I would trip and pull my ailing hamstring. So, I ran about 1.5 miles on the trails and another mile on the roads at the park. I took a Celebrex capsule today and will get another treatment at the doctor's office tomorrow. It is hot, but I have to start getting in longer runs. First marathon of the season is on October 9.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Darned Hamstring

While running trails yesterday, I stubbed my right toe on a root. While I did not fall, I "re-pulled" by right hamstring. It was very sore this morning. I went in to the doctor's office at noon for treatments. I ran a mile at the track this evening. Hopefully, it will be better tomorrow. My next treatment is on Friday.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Rain Missed Us

We have not seen rain lately in Huntsville t is extremely dry. There were heavy rains in south Texas today, but the line of storm and rain stopped at the Huntsville city limit. My friend 25 miles to the south said that it rained for 6 hours at his house. He called me to see if we were still going to run trails today. Business as usual here. The group ran 4.2 miles on the trails and I took a different route and ran 3.5.

Monday, July 18, 2011

New Shoes Out of the Box

I had another appointment for work on my hamstring at noon today. This evening, I took a new pair of shoes out of the box and ran 2 miles on the road.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Rare Sunday Morning Run

For the first time in a while, I met up with the group at the park to run trails on Sunday morning. They decided to do the nearly 7-mile loop around the lake. With my hamstring problem, I opted for a solo 3.5-mile loop. It was still sore, but I took it easy (I have never been accused of running hard, anyway).

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Another Day Off

My leg was still sore from falling on my already sore hamstring last Thursday, so I went to the track this afternoon and ran a mile. It was better than yesterday, so I plan on running trails with the group tomorrow morning.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Signed up for Surfside Beach Marathon

They opened up registration for the 2012 Surfside Beach Marathon (2-18-12) and I signed up. It will be my 7th straight Surfside. The experience is all about the weather on race day. Every year seems to be a completely different experience. In any case, it is leg 2 of the Texas Marathon Triple (Kingwood, Surfside & Seabrook), which I have completed the last 4 years. I have done the Marathons of Texas (White Rock, Houston & Austin) for the last 2 years. This year, Surfside and Austin are again on the same weekend. That means I have to do another double. However, I plan to do a double before then. Texas Trail 50K on December 10 and BCS Marathon on December 11. I need all the challenges I can get, anyway.
My right hamstring was really sore today after that hard fall on the trails yesterday. I ran a painful and limpy mile at the track this evening.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Party at the Park

Instead of running, most of the group decided to party at the park this evening to celebrate several birthdays. However, me, James, Benito and Phillip ran and before partying. About a mile into the run, I tripped on a rock and took a hard fall right on the spot that I had treatments on this afternoon. Darn, it hurt. We ended up running 2.8 miles. We did get a few minutes of rain this evening, the first in several weeks. I just saw on the news that June was the hottest June in Texas since 1895. I believe it.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

5K in Town

Maybe it was the inflamatory drug, but my hamstrings felt better today. It was hot as blazes, but I got in a 5K run on the roads around town. J. C. ran most of the way with me. About a mile into the run, we got stopped by a police officer. I thought we were going to get a speeding ticket, but he was someone I knew and he wanted to harass us about about running in the heat.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

First Treatment

I spent three hours today at the chiropractor's office receiving treatments on my hamstring. It felt better this evening, but I am sure the immediate improvement was a result of the inflamatory drug that the doctor gave me. I worked out at Nautilus and then ran trails at the park with the group. I only did about 2.5 miles.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Doctor Visit

I went to the doctor this afternoon to get the hamstring(s) checked out. He gave me some anti-imflamatory drugs and a referal for heat, ultra-sound and other treatment at the chiropractor's office. My first treatment is tomorrow morning.
After working out at Nautilus this evening, I went to the track again and ran laps.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Course Measurement

I went out in the middle of the hot afternoon today with a measuring wheel and measured a course for a new 5K Christmas run on December 3. The Chamber of Commerce is putting it on with the help of Sam Houston State University. I have measured many courses in Huntsville over the years. My wife asked me one time how I got away with painting on streets, curbs and sometimes, sidewalks. I do not know. The police have never stopped and asked what I was doing. After the course marking, I went to the track and ran laps.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

RTW

For the 48th time since 2004, I went down to The Woodlands and ran the Run The Woodlands 5K this morning. I finished in 36:28. The hamstring high in my right leg (my butt) is very sore and I probably need to get it treated for faster healing. Since my first marathon of the season is October 9, it will not be long before I need to start getting in longer runs.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Huntsville Half

I am on the race committee for the 33rd Annual Huntsville Half Marathon & 5K Run/Walk to be held on October 22. I invited international opera star, Melanie Holliday, to sing the National Anthem before the race. She called me back a couple days ago and told me that she would. I went to one of her performances a couple months ago and she is amazing. Can't wait to hear her sing again on October 22. Now, maybe I can get her to run the 5K.
It's Friday, both my hamstrings are hurting and I have a race tomorrow. So, I ran laps at the track this evening.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Hot and Humid

There was a heavy rain at the park yesterday (none at my house), so not only was it hot, it was very humid on the trails this evening. I ran 3 miles with James and a new guy, Benito.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Easy Three

I spent much of the afternoon buying and installing a new router on my computer. Then, I spent an hour and a half on the phone with ATT tech support in the Phillipines. He caught the "runner" in my email address and he is a runner. So, we talked some about running. Finally got the PC and the laptop to connect. It was a little late, but I then went to Nautilus and then to the track. Met J.C. at the track and timed some laps for him (all about 1:24). I have never been accused of doing speedwork. Before I could go run on the roads, I visited with one of our club members, Eva Edwards. She is about to graduate from Sam Houston State. Then, I did an easy 3-mile run around town. While passing through the campus, I met and visited with another runner friend, Tiffany Long.

Short Trail Run

To give my leg more recovery time, I kept my trail run this evening to a little over 2 miles.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Stu's Country Mile 5K

This morning, my wife and I made the 45-minute trip up I-45 to run Stu's Country Mile 5K in Centerville, Texas. There were about 50 runners, odd age groups and big trophies. I felt sore and stiff this morning and I may have pulled a muscle in my right leg about a mile into the race. I finished in 36:48 and got 3rd place in the 65 and older age group and a 12-inch trophy. My wife walked the course, made a pit stop at the Days Inn and finished last in the race with a time of 54:15. However, she was first in her age group and received a 18-inch trophy. It was only her third race ever. About half the runners were from Huntsville and most of us (as we have done for many years) went to the Town Cafe off the square after the race and had a big greasy breakfast. Nice start to the 4th of July Holiday.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Sunday Night 5K

I went down to The Woodlands this evening for The Woodlands Running Club's Sunday Night 5K. Bill Dwyer always does a good job putting on this race. I ran with Jon Walk (just back from the Kona Marathon in Hawaii) and finished in 34:30.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Saturday and Not a Race in Sight

There was not a race anywhere close to Huntsville, Texas this morning. So, I slept in. In fact, I did not get up until 10:45 this morning and only then because my wife called me from Wal-Mart and asked if I needed anything. I mowed the yard this afternoon and ran 3 miles on the roads this evening. Race tomorrow night in The Woodlands and Monday morning in Centerville.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Different Course

I went out this evening and ran an unplanned route around town. Mariah stopped me and we visited for a while. Her baby is due on July 12. Then, a good looking blonde lady stopped and offered me a beer. I was tempted. I then ran by the prison and got a wave from the guards in the towers (called "pickets" in Texas). I ran past the bat warehouse and endured the smell. It is an old warehouse belonging to the prison that is now inhabited by 60,000 bats. My course ended up being 4.4 miles. If I had brought water with me, it would have been a good day to go farther.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Good News and Bad News

I had my appointment with the doctor this afternoon to get the results of the MRI on my back last week. He had speculated that the arthritus in my lower back was pinching the sciatic nerve and that was causing my left left to occasionally collapse. He said the good news was that there was nothing touching my sciatic nerve and that my spine looked good. The bad news was that he did not know what was causing my leg to collapse. He said that if it continued, he would refer me to a neurologist. Well, darn; I like to get things fixed and move on.
I ran 3 miles on the roads in town in the heat of the early afternoon. I was stopped by Ramona Gonzalez, who drove by and saw me. She use to run with us, but left town about 14 years ago. She was in Huntsville for a concert. What a surprize! We had a nice visit. Then, I went to the hospital for a 6 p.m. meeting on a mud run they are putting on in Huntsville on October 29. I missed the group run at the park, but I made it out there in time for the post-run hydration. Tonight, I signed up for the new BCS Marathon in College Station on December 11. That will be the day after the Texas Trail 50K here at Huntsville State Park. I ran two marathons in one weekend two years ago, but this will be my first back to back 50K and marathon. We all need a good challenge once in a while.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Squeezed in a Run

I attended a meeting at the Chamber at 3 p.m. this afternoon to help them put on a new 5K race in December. It was after 5 p.m. when I got out of the meeting. I went home, changed clothes and went back into town for a run. Ended up running a mile on the roads and a lap around the track. I had to be somewhere at 7 p.m., so I had just enough time to get home, shower and be back in town at 7.

Late Post

Got busy on the computer tonight and forgot to post before midnight. As usual on Tuesday evening, I met up with the group at the park. We ran 3 miles on the trails.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Wife's Back

I just got back from picking up my wife at the airport in Houston. She has been visiting our daughter in North Carolina for 2 weeks. I got up this morning and helped Steve move all the running club signs and equipment to a new and larger storage room in town. I squeezed in a 2-mile run on the roads in town and then cleaned the house. With all those wild parties these last 2 weeks, it was a mess. Then, I went to Huntsville State Park for a meeting with the park superintendent and the director of a new marathon to be held at the park in February. Busy day.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Regular Three

I ran my regular 3-mile loop on the roads in town this evening. It was under 100 degrees, which made it relatively cool.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Bronze in Bremond



I was up early this morning for the 90-mile drive to Bremond. Courtney, Darren and Ben rode up with me. There were 560 runners there for the Polish Pickle 5K. The population of Bremond is only 860. It was hot, as usual, but you expect that in late June. My leg felt better and I finished in 33:59. I'm not sure how many runners were in the 70 and over age group, but I won third place.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Resting for the Pickle

I will be running the Polish Pickle 5K in Bremond tomorrow morning - for the 16th straight year. Given my sore leg, I am not sure how I will do. Probably slow, but when you are in the 70 and over age group, you are not expected to run fast, anyway. To rest up, I went to the track this evening and ran laps.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Humid Trails

After a heavy rain yesterday, it was very humid on the trails at the park this evening. I ran 3.4 miles and my leg held up okay. Now, I suppose we will return to the normal drought.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day Off

I took the day off and ran laps at the track this evening, after working out at Nautilus.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

MRI Done

I went in this morning and got the MRI done on my lower back. It was cold in the place and my bare feet sticking out of the end of the big tube almost froze. Long 20 minutes. Now, I have to wait until June 30 to see the doctor and get the results. This evening, I worked out at Nautilus and ran 3 miles on the trails at the park.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Tentative Three

After a workout at Nautilus this evening, I ran a tentative 3 miles on the roads in town. Even though it is still sore, my leg held up okay. I have to go in for an MRI tomorrow morning. I am really anxious the hear the results on June 30.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Tentative Two

Considering my leg problem, I ran 2 miles this evening, very tentatively. Can't wait to get the MRI done this Tuesday and the problem identified and fixed. In the meantime, I have two of my streak races coming up. The Polish Pickle 5K is in Bremond next Saturday and Stu's Country Mile 5K is in Centerville on July 4. This will be my 16th consecutive year for running both. There is no way that I will skip those races.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

June Bug 5K

Got up early this morning to put out the signs and set up the race clock for the June Bug 5K here in Huntsville. Even at 8 a.m., it was hot. I ran the race and set a new PW (personal worst). Not only was it hot, the course is very hilly. My goal was not to let my left leg collapse. I ran very tentatively and it showed in my time of 37:36.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Took it Easy

I took it easy today and ran laps at the track this evening. We have a 5K club run tomorrow. I have to get up early (ugh) to set up the race clock and put out the signs.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Doctor Results

I had my appointment with the doctor this afternoon. He did a rather thorough examination and then took an xray of my hip and lower back. He found arthritus in my lower back and thinks that is interfering with the sciatic nerve. That would be consistent with the symptoms that I have. He scheduled me for an MRI next Tuesday and another appointment with him on June 30. If that is the problem, he would recommend a shot of cortisone in the lower back. No mention of surgery.
This evening, I ran 3 miles on the trails with the group. It was somewhat painful, but tolerable.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Doctors Appointment Tomorrow

I called the doctor's (orthopedic surgeon) office this morning and have an appointment tomorrow afternoon. I gave the nurse my symptoms and she immediately diagnosed it as a sciatic nerve problem. She gave me the appointment, but thinks that I will be referred to a back specialist. I was talking to one of my friends at Nautilus this afternoon. He had the same symptoms and ended up having back surgery to fix the sciatic nerve problem. My only question is: Can I have back surgery and run the same day? I'll wait and see what the doctor says tomorrow before I worry too much about it. In the meantime, my leg was still very sore today and I ran a mile at the track.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Back from Tyler

I was in Tyler yesterday for a family get-together. While there, I slipped out for a 1.25-mile painful run on a concrete running trail. I got back to Huntsville this evening in time to meet the group at the park. My leg was still hurting, so I did a gimpy 1 mile run on the trails. Tomorrow, I'm calling the doc for an appointment.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Just when I thought it was getting better

I was just over a mile into my run on the streets this evening, when my left leg almost gave way. The pain was from the calf to the hamstring. The shortest distance back to the track was a little less than a mile. I ran back, but with a big limp. Guess I need to get it checked.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

They both beat me



Two of my grandkids, Sara, 10, from Wylie, TX and Phillip, 7, from Yuma, AZ raced me at the Run the Woodlands 5K this morning. They ran with my older son, George, and stayed just ahead of me the entire race. So, I gave them both $100. The race director, Melissa Keith, was nice enough to make a presentation of the envelopes and Sara and Phillip enjoyed the recognition. They have been training for the event and they did well. They both play sports and, hopefully, they will also take up the sport of running. My finish time was 35:36.

Friday, June 10, 2011

May get expensive tomorrow

I had a lot of family at the house today. Tomorrow is the day my grandson is going to try to beat me in a 5K race for $100. Now, I found out my 10 year old granddaughter, Sara, is challenging me also. So, I could be out $200 after the Run the Woodlands 5K tomorrow. I did slip away from the crowd at the house this evening and get in a 2-mile run on the roads.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Park Roads

My daughter and two grandkids came in today from Yuma, AZ. Phillip, 7, is challenging me at the Run the Woodlands 5K this Saturday for $100. He will have two uncles running with him to keep him on pace. I had to go to a meeting at the hospital at 6 this evening about an upcoming local run. I left the meeting early to get out to the park to run trails. By the time I got there, the group had been running for 45 minutes. So, I ran two miles on the park roads and then socialized with the group.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Run Dirty Early or Clean Late

I did yard work all afternoon, including mowing, edging and spraying insecticide around the house. I finished all my work and went to take a shower. No water. City workers were working on a broken pipe down the street. Rather than run dirty, I waited for them to fix the pipe and get the water running again. I was finally able to take a shower about 7:30 p.m. Then, I went to Nautilus for a workout and ran 3 miles on the roads in town.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Steamy Trails

After the rain yesterday and maybe a little this evening, it was hot and steamy on the trails this evening. The group consensus was to run 3 miles, rather than the normal 4.2. I did not argue. In fact, my leg felt a little better. I am debating with myself about going to the doctor and getting a referal for treatments at the pain clinic.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Resting the Sore Leg

After working out at Nautilus this evening, I went over to the track and ran laps.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunday Night 5K



It is the first Sunday of the month, so I went down to The Woodlands to run the Sunday Night 5K. Leah Koester and Curtis Barton from our club in Huntsville were there. I also met Tiffany Long, who was running her first race ever. She is from Huntsville and about to graduate from Sam Houston State. The temperature in the area was over 100 degrees today, but it had cooled down to 96 by race time at 7 p.m. I finished in 34:44.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

I'm starting to like this new age group

I got up early this morning and drove 70 miles down to Houston to run the Heights 5K. The course was out and back on perfectly flat Heights Blvd. It was hot, but most of the course was shaded by trees. My leg bothered me the entire distance and I finished in 34:15, a little slower than normal. However, I won 1st place of 5 runners in my 70 and over age group. If I ran in my old 65-69 age group, I would have placed 13 of 18. This new age group ain't bad.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Grandkid Challenge

Last year, I told all five of my grandkids that I would give them $100 if they beat me a 5K race. I did this to encourage them to take up the sport of running at an early age. My grandson, Phillip, who is 7, is the first one to challenge me. He will race me at the Run the Woodlands 5K next Saturday, June 11. He and his family are moving from Arizona to North Carolina and they will be visiting next week. His dad is a Marine and is already in North Carolina. His mom has been training him in the Arizona heat. I wish him luck. The good news for him is that my leg is still sore. I took some Ibuprofen with my lunch, ran a mile at the track this evening and took more Ibuprofen with dinner. I have two 5K's this weekend and will take it easy in both.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Continuation of Leg Problem

I went out to the park this evening to run trails with the group. While my left leg was not too bad in Lufkin yesterday, it hurt today. So, I cut my run to 2.7 miles. I suppose that I should take some Ibuprofen tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

National Running Day



Today was National Running Day. The Lufkin Area Pacesetters, of which I am a member, got together for a trail run this evening to celebrate the occasion. I had not been over there for a while, so I made the 85-mile drive to the park on the other side of Lufkin. We ran a loop on the trails. The distance was about 3.2 miles. Thanks to Carla Morgan for setting up the event and even providing beer and a commemorative T-shirt. It was good to see my old friends, Ray Stanfield, Scott Harper and Cindy Springs and meet other members of the group.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Attempt at Trails

I went out to the park this evening to attempt to run trails with my sore leg. I ran 1.5 miles on the trails, but took the 1.2-mile shortcut back on the road (total 2.7). My leg was still hurting, but it has improved. I will still take it easy for a few days. It is a good thing that I do not have another marathon until October 9.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day 5K

We had the club's annual Memorial Day 5K at my house this morning. The race did not start until 10 a.m., but I had to go out earlier and put out the signs and contact some neighbors on the course and ask them to lock up their dogs. Then, I directed the race. We had 46 runners. The race was followed by a cookout and everyone seem to have a good time. My good friend, Loren Sheffer of Houston, came up and ran and it is always nice to visit with him. It is a good way to celebrate Memorial Day and remember those who gave their life for our freedom.
My leg was still hurting today, so I waited until 10 p.m. tonight to go to the track and get in a run. I managed to get in a mile without too much pain.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Recovery Run

My leg was still sore today. I managed to get in a gimpy mile at the track this evening. A couple times, it felt like it was going to collaspe. I am not sure what the problem is, so I will rest it with short runs for the next few days.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Run the Woodlands 5K

Not a good race. My left leg from the calf to the hamstring hurt the entire distance and it has been burning for the rest of the day. The heat and humidity did not help, either. My finish time was right at 35:00. This evening, Marilynn and I attended a concert by international opera star, Melanie Holliday, and dinner at the Elkins Lake Country Club. Great performance and dinner.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Laps

Since I have a race tomorrow morning, I went to the track this evening and ran laps.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Steamy Trails

After a much needed heavy rain last night, the trails at the park this evening were hot and steamy. I met up with the group and we ran our usual 4.2-mile loop.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sluggish

I spent most of the day installing an irrigation system around my house and the temperature was in the high 90's this afternoon. By the time I got around to working out at Nautilus and running, I really felt sluggish. If I wasn't a streaker, I would have taken the day off. I ran my regular 3-mile loop around town.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Different Tuesday

Typically, on Tuesdays I run trails with the group at the park. However, this evening I attended a presentation at Huntsville Memorial Hospital on gait and running shoes. The presentation was given by Melissa Keith of Luke's Locker in The Woodlands. This afternoon, I squeezed in a workout at Nautilus and a 2-mile run on the roads in town.

Monday, May 23, 2011

New Age Group

Today was my 70th birthday, so I am in a new age group. It is funny how most of us runners think of our age in terms of what age group we are in. I had a good day, even though the first half was filled with mowing and other yard work. I spent part of the afternoon in a meeting at the Chamber of Commerce helping them get a new December 3 race off the ground. Then, while in town, I stripped down to my running shorts and ran 7 miles around town. Maybe if my birthday was in January, I would have tried a 70-mile run. This evening, Marilynn and our son, Ben, took me out to dinner at the Texas Roadhouse in Conroe.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Three

It was hot and humid in Huntsville this afternoon. I went out in the middle of the afternoon and ran 3 miles on the roads in town. Nice not having to put up with heavy traffic.